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Citibank Lowered My Credit Score. – Robert

“Dear Steve,

Citi Bank recently raised my interest rate from 9.5 to 29.99, even though I had a perfect payment record. This raised my monthy payment from $300 t0 $750 per month. I called them, and they agreed to return my interest to 9.5 if I agreed to not use my card and allow them to draft the $300 from my checking account, which I agreed to. I have a FICO membership for alerts, and was just informed that Citi reported that I couldn’t pay my payments and that they had agreed to a “special repayment agreement” with me. My FICO score dropped 61 points.

Can they legally do this? If so, is there a way to negotiate a payoff for less than I owe (i owe them @ $11k, and restore my credit score?


Dear Robert,

It sure sounds like when agreed to the modified terms with Citibank for them to return you to the old rate that you agreed to a “special repayment agreement” other than your regular terms which would have been 29.99%.

You said, “is there a way to negotiate a payoff for less than I owe (i owe them @ $11k, and restore my credit score?”, No.

Your credit score will rebound from this. Just make sure you continue to use credit and pay your bills on time.

And the reason Citibank raised your interest rate and payment, it’s simple, because they can. Under current regulations any creditor can modify the terms of the credit agreement at any time with 15 days notice. The way to avoid that happening and being surprised is to not carry a balance.


You are not alone. I'm here to help. There is no need to suffer in silence. We can get through this. Tomorrow can be better than today. Don't give up.

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About the author

Steve Rhode

Steve Rhode is the Get Out of Debt Guy and has been helping good people with bad debt problems since 1994. You can learn more about Steve, here.


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